HHS wants health discrimination stories

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius  (AP photo/Matt Rourke) HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (AP photo/Matt Rourke)

An arm of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services wants to know more about discrimination in health programs and health activities.

The HHS Office for Civil Rights has put out a request for information seeking public comments on individuals' experiences with health-related discrimination.

The HHS office also is asking for information about efforts by carriers, health care providers, and other "covered entities" to comply with federal civil rights laws.

"There are different types of health programs and activities," officials said in one RFI question. "These include health insurance coverage, medical care in a physician's office or hospital, or home health care, for example. What are examples of the types of programs and activities that should be considered health programs or activities under Section 1557 and why?"

Officials also asked individuals to give them accounts of their own experiences with various types of discrimination in health programs and activities, and for organizations to talk about efforts to make health care and health information available to people with limited ability to use English. 

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